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US Holds on to Measles Elimination Status

October 10, 2019

Despite experiencing a record high of measles cases in 2019, the United States has maintained its measles elimination status, which it has held for nearly 20 years, the U.S. Centers for Disease Prevention and Control (CDC) announced.

The CDC confirmed 1,249 cases of measles between January 1 and October 4, 2019, the highest number of cases since 1992. Cases were reported in 31 states, but the majority (75%) were linked to outbreaks in New York City and New York state.

The United States gained measles elimination status in 2000. Measles elimination status is lost if a chain of transmission in an outbreak is sustained for more than 12 months.

In the last year, the United Kingdom, Greece, Venezuela, and Brazil have lost their measles elimination status. The first six months of 2019 saw more measles cases reported worldwide (364,808 in 182 countries) than in any year since 2006.

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